Introducing SCORE’s New Hires: Elba Mandujo and Ge Yao Liu

Ellen Hu ’24

Prior to Scripps students’ return to campus in January, two new staff members joined the Scripps Communities of Resources and Empowerment (SCORE) team. International Student Advisor Ge Yao Liu comes from San Francisco State University where he acted as the Associate Director of the Center for Global Engagement. Elba Mandujo, the new Assistant Director of SCORE, joined Scripps from California State University Northridge where she acted as Senior Community Director.

The Scripps Voice (TSV): How has your experience working as the International Student Coordinator been so far?
Ge-Yao Liu: It has been great, though I am still trying to settle in the campus community. I have met most of the international students and all the key counterparts both at Scripps and the 5Cs.

TSV: Tell me a little more about your role as the International Student Coordinator and why it’s important for the Scripps community.
GL: My role mainly focuses on assisting international students with their immigration matters or concerns, such as F-1 student visa.

TSV: What are you hoping to accomplish this semester?
GL: For this semester, I am hoping to help them with their tax return between now and April 18 and OPT/CPT – Optional Practical Training for post-graduation and Curricular Practical Training for their majors if required – as some international students are approaching their graduation.

TSV: Why did you join the SCORE team?
Elba Mandujo: As a first-generation, working-class, bilingual, Queer Chicana from South Central Los Angeles, I firsthand understand the importance of spaces like SCORE in a college student’s personal and academic life. I am excited to transition into a role that allows me to create and sustain an environment of learning, growth, awareness, advocacy and empowerment for all students of different identities.

TSV: Tell me a little more about your role as the Assistant Director of SCORE.
EM: My primary focus is the day to day operation of the SCORE office. This includes supporting the programming efforts of SCORE staff and larger Scripps community, serving as an advisor for the identity-base clubs and organizations and the coordinator for First Gen. Now that we are able to be present in a face-to-face environment, I am looking forward to the opportunity to nourish more impactful and positive relationships with students and a sense of belonging in the SCORE office. Additionally, I am excited to build collaborations across the 7Cs to foster a larger community, network and support system for our students.

TSV: What has struck you most about SCORE and the SCORE community over the past few weeks you’ve been with us?
EM: It has been amazing to meet so many students and student leaders that want to create spaces and programs, that want to bond over their experiences in the last year and a half, that want to make up the time that they have been away from campus, and that just want to exist with and in community.

TSV: What are you most excited about working here?
EM: Coming from large public institutions, I am excited to experience the tight-knit community in a small liberal arts college. As someone that loves building intentional relationships with students, faculty, staff and campus partners, I am looking forward to being part of a space where there is more accessibility and opportunity to connect with one another.

TSV: Are there any programs you are hoping that SCORE puts on this semester?
EM: In every conversation I’ve had with students so far, their favorite event has been the community dinners. I recognize we are still in the middle of a pandemic and safety is our number one priority. Nonetheless, I am crossing my fingers that towards the end of the spring semester we will be in a much better place and, if restrictions are lifted or changed, we are able to bring back such a popular space that made so many students feel connected and brought them so much joy.

TSV: What should the Scripps community know about you as you enter this new space?
EM: As I continue transitioning into SCORE and the Scripps community, I recognize that much has happened prior and during this pandemic. I believe in the importance of understanding the community first to best cater to the needs and as I enter this new space, my intention is to build trust within the community so students feel comfortable in expressing and sharing those needs.

Image Source: Ellen Hu ’24